The Humfreys surname comes from the Old French personal name
Humfrey, a cognate of the Old German names Hunfrid and Humfrid. This name was originally derived from the Germanic elements "hun," which means "bear cub," and "frid" or "fred," which mean "peace." It was borne by a 9th century saint and Bishop of Therouanne, who was popular among Norman settlers of England.
Early Origins of the Humfreys family
The surname Humfreys was first found in Denbighshire
(Welsh: Sir Ddinbych), a historic county in Northeast Wales
created by the Laws in Wales
Act 1536, where they held a family seat
from very early times and were granted lands by Duke William of Normandy
, their liege Lord, for their distinguished assistance at the Battle of Hastings in 1066 A.D.
Early History of the Humfreys family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Humfreys research.Another 171 words (12 lines of text) covering the years 1069, 1391, 1447, 1714, 1579, 1647, 1674, 1621, 1719, 1662, 1648, 1712, 1701, 1712, 1735 and are included under the topic Early Humfreys History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Humfreys Spelling Variations
Although there are comparatively few Welsh
surnames, they have a great many spelling variations
. Variations of Welsh
names began almost immediately after their acceptance within Welsh
society. In the Middle Ages, it was up to priests and the few other people that recorded names in official documents to decide how to spell the names that they heard. Variations that occurred because of improper recording increased dramatically as the names were later transliterated into English. The Brythonic Celtic
language of Wales
, known by natives as Cymraeg, featured many highly inflected sounds that could not be properly captured by the English language. Spelling variations
were, however, also carried out according to an individual's design: a branch loyalty within the family, a religious adherence, or even patriotic affiliations were all indicated by the particular variation of one's name. The spelling variations
of the name Humfreys have included Humphreys, Homfray, Humfrey, Humfrie, Humfries, Humfreys, Humphereys, Humphries, Humphrays, Humphray, Humphrey, Humphris, Humphry, Humphryes and many more.
Early Notables of the Humfreys family (pre 1700)
Prominent amongst the family during the late Middle Ages was Humphrey (1391-1447), the son of King Henry IV, who was Duke of Gloucester and Earl of Pembroke, and also a patron of letters; Sir William Humphreys, Lord Mayor of London in 1714; William Humfrey (died 1579) English goldsmith and Assay Master... Another 53 words (4 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Humfreys Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Humfreys family to Ireland
Some of the Humfreys family moved to Ireland
, but this topic is not covered in this excerpt.Another 101 words (7 lines of text) about their life in Ireland is included in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Humfreys family to the New World and Oceana
joined the great migrations to North America in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Like their Scottish and Irish neighbors, many Welsh
families left their homeland hoping to find hope and prosperity in a land that the English did not exercise a tight rule over. Those Welsh
immigrants that successfully traveled to North America went on to make significant contributions to the rapid development of both Canada and the United States in terms of the settling of land and the establishment of industry. They also added to the rich cultural heritage of both countries. An examination into the immigration and passenger lists has discovered a number of people bearing the name Humfreys: Richard Humfrey, who was one of the settlers left at Roanoke, Virginia in 1584 by Sir Walter Raleigh; John Humfrey, who was on record in Massachusetts in 1629.
The Humfreys Motto
The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.
Motto: L'homme vrai aime son pays
Motto Translation: The true man loves his country.